GAVIN Williamson was the first to go in Tory PM Johnson’s reshuffle yesterday as he was sacked from his post as education secretary. Then Robert Jenrick confirmed that he too has been sacked by Tory PM Johnson as housing secretary.
Rehana Azam, GMB national secretary, said: ‘We’ve had nothing but failing Education Secretaries under this government.
‘Our kids deserve one that invests in children’s education and future.’
Former Tory justice secretary David Gauke said it was ‘widely predicted’ that Gavin Williamson would be sacked, and it ‘would have been a shock if he had stayed in place’.
Labour’s shadow education secretary, Kate Green, said: ‘He failed children and young people, their parents and our hard working education staff throughout one of the most testing periods in our history.
‘Two years of exams chaos and staff abandoned, unsupported and demoralised. That is Gavin Williamson’s legacy.’
‘The prime minister has allowed this to happen, keeping a failing education secretary in post for months and refusing to fight for children’s futures.’
University and College Union (UCU) general secretary Jo Grady said: ‘Gavin Williamson will be remembered by university and college staff as a disastrous secretary of state who caused deep and lasting damage.
‘From the mutant algorithm which attempted to hardwire inequalities into the exam system, to his negligent mismanagement of the pandemic leading to schools, universities and colleges becoming Covid incubators, Williamson’s long list of failures is shocking.
‘Throughout his time as Secretary of State for Education Williamson has pursued an agenda that attempted to undermine the purpose of education, most recently choosing to slash arts and humanities funding in half and extend the marketised, debt-fuelled loan model to our colleges.
‘Rather than responding to the challenges of a global pandemic, he led the charge in a completely pointless culture war against university staff and students.
‘A culture war that was entirely fabricated and led to no positive change in the sector. Wasting such an inordinate amount of time just to satisfy the hardcore Tory base underlines just how little he really cares about education.
‘The next Secretary of State for Education has an opportunity to build a new relationship with the staff and students in our universities and colleges, but they must commit to repairing the damage that has been done by Gavin Williamson.’